Easy Peasy Cooking has the recipes for success
- Credit: Archant
Ipswich recipe kit company Easy Peasy Cooking is going for growth in 2019 with the help of HM Prisons.
The firm has teamed up with prisoners at Wakefield New Hall women’s prison providing important skills to improve their employability when they are released.
In partnership with the prison service and training provider Novus, the Thyme for Work programme was launched in September as a social enterprise.
Boss Ian Bacon said: “I negotiated with the prison service to find an appropriate women’s prison to provide training and a work experience programme that will better suit girls and women,
“A full-time supervisor runs the workshop and there are around 15-20 prisoners working in the project during their sentence.
“They are making themselves more employable in outside society.”
Finding a job after leaving prison can prove very difficult but the scheme already has employs two ex-offenders selling packs in their own communities and to butchers, grocers and fishmongers.
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“We also aim to provide employment for ex-offenders,” Mr Bacon said. “They are sold mostly by women, to women. Like the Avon model.
“We are in business to make money, but there is a better way of doing business.
“Ex-offenders work hard and are loyal.
“Schemes like this can help break the re-offending cycle.”
Mr Bacon originally launched his recipe kits at Ipswich Market in December 2015.
He said:“We took three days worth of kits, and sold out the first morning.
“We had looked at food boxes as an option, but thought let’s give people the choice where they buy their fresh food, supporting their local butchers, fishmongers and grocers. It also about making cooking fun.”
The Inspiration range of kits is now 40 strong, with the most popular catalan Spanish stew, and vegan bolognese, and at this time of the year, Boxing Day turkey curry is also a favourite.
“We hope to have £500,000 sales next year,” Mr Bacon added.
He is already talking to major retailers about taking the packs in 2019 which will require increasing production.